Lessons Learned From Brandon Rios vs. Richard Abril

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He kept turning him by a corner, sometimes with a sweeping shift on his back foot, leaning on the side, pivoting, simultaneous to a Check Hook that displaced an undefeated brawler's energy elsewhere into space. The substitute fighter to fellow Cuban, Yuriorkis Gamboa, smartly used his long left arm like a tailor to a yardstick to keep his distance and consistently frustrate his opponent.

The Mexican-American boxer, Brandon Rios has gained considerable popularity in his career for his fighting style. There is just so much fieriness in him whenever he boxes and that kind of passion has helped him grow a good following in the sport, so that in a previous article I referred to him as Mr.Excitement, which I'm sure many would agree. He throws punches enthused and has an almost equal eagerness to take some hits himself with a capability to sustain the action with a rock hard chin. Coming into this fight he issued a statement that he had trained hard enough for war and there is no reason to doubt it.

When the bell sounded off to signal a battle had formally begun, Brandon Rios trotted his way into a ring against an opponent he could barely hit. Richard Abril didn't look as powerful as he, nor does he seem to have the kind of physique that can keep up with Rios if he opted to set himself up in a toe-to-toe style of fighting. But in Boxing, the science of it makes it so that the stronger, bigger man doesn't always win. Rios clearly looked so much more solid out there and even the heavier of the two especially after missing the weight requirement by two pounds during the weigh in and should now be a full-fledged Junior Welterweight.

Richard Abril didn't  have to think hard on how to tackle his foe, nor hope or pray to the gods for a physical quality he doesn't have. He simply used his height and long reach advantage to protect his lanky frame and worked the hardest behind his jab. It was the right approach to an opponent like Rios who consistently presses for action, and perhaps his only sound option of getting things done under the circumstances, otherwise he would most likely succumb to the relentless pressure just as the slick Miguel Acosta before him.

If this was war as Rios had said he had trained for, then he would be out marching under the piercing rays of the sun in an open field, fighting fiercely on the ground against an enemy firing comfortably from the sky. 

Many would say that Brandon Rios looked gaunt up close & that he was not himself in the ring. But had he been in good form that night of the fight my guess is that he would still have lost against the slithering Abril on the grounds of the efficacy of the latter's tactic. He was so out boxed in that fight that sometimes I forget he had actually won it in a strongly contested Split Decision. 

Rios kept walking in to his opposition's jab that snapped his head back from time to time. It wasn't so much that Abril's jab was very precise but it's apparently due to his lack of head movement and stiff posture. He didn't move side to side nor time Abril's long arm coming in so he could slip in to the side and plant that bomb to the body.

Head movement makes an opponent miss a lot of jabs and follow up punches and gives you split second opportunities to come in. And the offensive side of his game was not so bright either. Instead of throwing jabs as his corner encouraged him, Rios just kept barging in only to be met with uppercuts and shots to the head and body by an opponent that has already snaked out of harm's away. Rios wasn't too...

Get the rest of this article over at Rope-A-Dope Radio.


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